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Full text of "Shipbuilding in Canada [microform] : the handicaps, and the remedy therefor suggested"

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AddWonal comments / 
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Tb* copy filmad hara hM baan raproduead thanks 
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Blbllothaqua natlonala du Canada 



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MKIOCOrT nSOWTION TBI GHAUT 

(ANSI ond ISO TESI CHADT No. J) 




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A APPLIED IIVVIGE In, 

1G%3 East Main SlrHt 

Rochiiltr. Haw York 14609 U5A 

(7!6) 482 - 0300 - Phon. 

(716) 288- 5989 - Fo. 



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S hipbuilding in Canada 

^hQ Handicapsi and the 

Remedy Therefor 

Suggefted 



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SHIPBUILDiNr. IN CANADA. 

THE HANDICAPS. AND THE RP.MEDY 
THEREFOR SUGGESTED. 

„ fl^?"/*"* Great Lakes and the St. Lawmnoe Hiver, there m now 
a fleet of vessels that wo.il.l carry about :i,m\m) ton, at one time 
there was curried last year al.out «(),(H)0,(KM) tons of western products 

Of this great fleet of vessels, less than three per cent of the 

this waterway canals and ai.ls to navigation. While the country 
.s growmg nch, and Canadian pr.xlucts west of and along this 
waterway are increasing very fast, the Canadian slii,- tonnage d.«s 

o"nlvt I,.","™ ';'" ''•' ""' "' ""' ™""'^>- '" '-' '» - "'"^"t 'he 
only industry of importance that is not protected properly 

'J^.tf " I "''"'[ 'i^*,"' "•'" «'*'" '■*■''' "■"*'"■ '^"''■•™- "' the United 
SM^;,M •" ' ^'"P'""1'""K f"^ 'he lake trade are fully protected. 
Shipbuilding ,s in a wonderfnl state of pros,«rity, there being fully 
thirty times as much in progress as on the Canadian side. Com- 
pare the annual report of the largest shipyard in Canada with the 
annua , „ .^e largest shipyard in the United States on he 

Great Lakes, and it will be seen that the first is struggling along with 
httle or no profit, while the other has had .he freaLt pLible 
prosperity for the past seven years. possioie 

On the American side of the upper lakes, last year and this year 
including ve^ls now under contract to build, more th .n one hundred 

of"^ V^L ""^ ''° *" "'" '■*' '""«' ""h " ^-^-O-i-g capacity 
from 8,000 to 14,000 tons each, and costing nearlv $hm,^m 
will e launched As this great fleet come, into use, there will 1« 
a lot of old small vessels to sell to Canadians 

and nrf «rr °' "*", '"•'^ '"^^ ^ <"^"'"""' »» '-oth Canadian 
and United States vessels, that is, products from one side to the 
other. The carrying of cargo coastwise, or from a port in the 



United State, to mother port inth at country i« P™^"^ • '» ^ ^. 
fined ab«,lutely to their own ve«eU, wh.l. m tl,e C."'f ''" "»f„ 
wi«, trad, the BritiA riup enjoy, the «.m. priv.lege «. the C»nad »n^ 
The .oartwi., tr«i. of the United State, in tlu lake "P"" « '"»^' 
than in Cana<la, yet Canadian product, and trade ar« U":""'"* 
s^Ta.; that n..n'y United State. ve«,l. a«, requ.red o ca-ry C»^ 
dian grain and other producto to American port, that mi^t go 
out through Canadian port, if there we™ more Canadian .h.p. to 

■""^lle'united State. Government protect. iU .hipbuilding on the 

Great Lalce. a. follow.: Any ve»el built n ""y .<'*';''' T"^ 

cannot be regi.tered in the United State.. All repau. t. a Urn ted 

State, hip made in Canada mu.t pay fifty r,'^"^'*''^'.' «tn? 

drydoclc charge., when rf>e arrive, in the United State. At pre«>nt 

?h^ri. a Bir^fo,« Cong™- to prohibit «.y ve»el repair, m a 

foreign port, at any rate only enou^ to carry the ve«el to a 

u3 mft^P port In the coaatwi* trade this fu y protecU the 

Trttag v«^rbecau» no foreign-built ve«el U a lowed to com- 

TtT ^th W and it al«. protect, the d.ip-builCer becau« he 

Cw. the ne^ d>ip mu.t be conrtructed in the United States, ateo 

th ™pl which,'n dull time., may L3.P to keep hi. y.^ bu.y 

until new vewel. are wanted. In thi. way both the .hipbuilder 

!^ ttoA^wner are protected. The Canadian-built ve-el^ 

^her oo-operetor (the Britid. tramp,, and the Canadian-owned 

Uni^ Tt^built .^y. may go to the United Stat » for repair., 

and come back to Canada without paying any duty on «ich repairs, 

" '^^tte" 3 buiit in Canada appear, on the United Stat«. 
ReBister, while there are now on 'he Canadian Regiater (Lirt of 

tha? were built in the United State., also 68 large rtoel rteamer. 
that were built in Great Britain. 

About three-fourths of the above tonnage i. domg busmen on 
the G™at Lake, .nd the St. Lawrence, and in addition there is a 
fleet of small Britirfi tramp steamer., which have the same privileges 
as the Canadian-built ship in doing a coastwi* trade m Canada, 
mostly on the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence. 



I 



Thmie Hritinh tramp iiteiiini-m are nut enrolled in the Ciiniuliitn 
"hipping Lint, and when trade on the fjreat F,8k'it in very dull, 
they can go back to the ocean, aa they are all fittcJ with salt water 
applianceR for their iKiilerii. They are UHUally old itaaineni, too 
■mall for the tr»<le they were o Ipnally intende<i for. It HiiitH 
their ownem therefore to ni»h them in v.^mn the ('ana<tlan lake trade 
when it is good, and thiw aiwint in cutting freights for the Canadian- 
built ship. 

Up to the present time there are only alxiut tv live ('Bnuillan- 
built steel vessels in operation, and four or five undir contract to 
build, while in the lake region of the Unite<l States there are thirty 
times as many unde: construction and contract. 

When a Canadian shipping firm wants a ship they will ask one 
of the Canadian shipyards for a price, and as the Canadian yanl 
is paying about the san • wages to its men as are paid in the United 
States, and the material costs a little more than in the Ui.ited 
States, it hat. to ask about the same price. If the Canadian shifi- 
owner be not satisfied he then asks for a prico in Great Hriiain, 
where labour costs much less. The Canadian shipyard knowing 
thii, if it desires the contract, must offer to build the ship for little 
or no profit, otherwise the order will be placed in Great liritain. 
Often this has he-a done. Vessels have been built in Rngland and 
cut in two at Quebec, or Montreal. Theyaretlion taken up the canals 
in two halves an^' nut togethei again it some yard in the United 
State-s. Another source of competition may arise from the puruhase 
of old vessels built in the United States on which a small duty only 
is paid. Or still another is the hire or purchase of British tramp 
steamers, all of which work against the Canadian shipyard. 

In building a Canadian steel ship, about one-third the cost is 
in the ron and steel as it comec from the mills, and the other two- 
thirds ,s labour. May we not 'ook forwa.-d ij the time when all 
the material will be madejn Canada as cheaply as in Great Britain, 
or elsewhere. 

When ont considers the cc of maintaining the aids to navi- 
gation from the entrcnce to the gulf of the St. Lawrence to the 
International Boundary line on Lake Superior, in Minnesota, it is 
obvious that a much larger fieet of vessels should belong to the 
country wii pays the cost of these improvemer-'s. 



The pwiwc.n o( ii, viKiiticiti on the (Iroat I.nkfM kihI Si. I.nwn'ii('c 
KiviT ia alKiut iwvpn niiintlin. Thrre «n> many iiarrnw rhannftlH ami 
r "ky iMiltoiii!!, aki iiiiicli think wriilhrr, «<> (liiit thi> ilanRvr i>f 
iKittom (lanm)»^ to the »hip is nrral Thit has hroiinhf aUait a 
Biwl vcHM'l c'Mpci'ially ndaptiKl fcir the traili-, whirh pan ciiin net 
im)titM that olil anil uiiHttml vpwielH caiinot do. 

A iiKKlern nlwl vp.-i.spI for tra<le on tho H|)|ior LakoH anil tlm 8t- 
Ijiwrcni'i- Hivcr i.s liiiijt with a iloiihle holtoni, with a iloplh Iwtwn-n 
themi iMiltiKiM of fro'n thirc to nix fn-t. Thw fnalilc.i the rarrii'Hf 
of a larun watiT hallast wlii-n nmnn wilhonl cargit. Shoiilil a vow«>l 
Krounil while oarryinx watn- ImllnKt, it ran lie piiin|M-i| out atul the 
vi-Hnvl n-leawil, or if the veiwel, light or loaileil, «lrikeH a n>rky 
bottom anil niplureM the lower iHittimi, the up|)er Ixittom will 
.•roteet the whip anil rarKo. ThiM kinil of navinaliim leailH up to a 
HyBteni of taking inileh ri«k, anil conneiiiient ly wmie great tM)ttnm 
ilanuiKCs arc the result. Soniet inien the lower, or outer holtoni, 
in ruplureil anil flattened up aRninut the inner iMittoin without 
damage to earRo. Much ilaniage.s umially range from JS.tKH) to 
I5»),(HK) eaeh. Then add to thi.s the damaced from wrerkn and 
I'ollisiionH, whifh may lie even niueh gri-ater. I,a«t year there were 
i|uit« a nunilier of thene that would reach »1IM»,(KI0 eaeh, and in 
either cane sucli ilamageH must lie repaired at some yard where they 
have a gooil dry-dock and nil the miHlern appliances, such u» the 
lieat 8teel Mhipliuilding machinery and tools, machine and liiiilcr 
shops, foundries, forges, cranes, derricks, and the latest improve<l 
air tools, and plenty of power to drive them all. A well equipped 
yard must have in stuck from »,V),0(Ki to $llK),n(K) worth of iron r .d 
steel to draw from, al,io a lot of wooil-working machinery, and such 
lumlier and timber as is rcquireil to carry on the business. There 
must also be a full staff of superintendents and skilled men in all 
departments; there munt lie available at least 30() men to work night 
or day to make all kinds of repairs; a staff of officers, and from 3m 
to 1,000 employees. As the running expense of a vessel is so great , 
the owner only insuring against repairs and not against loss of time 
to tne vessel, liecause of the short season, each day lost in repairs 
is about equal to two days. Hence the owner of the damaged vessel 
will send her to u place wh"re they have all the requisite facilities 
to do the work night or day as required. 



Fi>r oxninpli*, niipiHMinx iliinmitM ilonp (in the l.iikpx ti> n Cnnn- 
iliaii-lmilt vpwwl, Hrilixh vetuiel, or n CanitHinn vphm*! hiiilt in thp 
I'nitiHl Stiitfi'. If thin iliiniiiKP ix of ii rhtriirlpr tliiil would inili- 
I'lttn from SA.IHMI to tno.lKMI, whirli in A ponii>"in ni'rtirn>nrr , the 
Ciinailiun ownor, or hix rpprrHPn; *ivo is imiiuMliatoly itp|>rotr*h''d liy 
an uKPnt i>f mip of the KliipyanU in the ( nit«l Stat(>«, Thin ap>iit 
givcN him ouch iii<hi('<*mpniH that thr Canadian in oflp't trmptrd to 
Ro th<<r<> for repairs, (.ant xcnMin, up to OitoU'r Int, tllNMNK) of 
HUrh repair^ had l>eon mndn, white not $t,(NN) of repairs to a United 
HtatcH vesM-l have Iwen niaile in Canadu, allhouKh in thin rnuntry 
there are plantn junt an ffiuid and an ailecjun niipply of nicilled 
lalMiur an ran Iw found in I'liiied States waters. .My own conviction 
is that unlcsH sufTicint protection is gi.en to the Cnnailiaii shi|i- 
IxiildihK and re)iair yards immediately, they may have to ((o out of 
laisinesH altogether. There has lie' ■ no profit made hy the nhip- 
liuildinK firms in Canada for many vwirs, while, on the other hand, 
the industry has flourished with our neighbours. 

For the nine mo.iths ending on the 31st of March, MMI7, 'he 
total mail stihsidies and steamship subventions vote.l by i'arli.iment 
amount to $U,5S,757: the appropriations for ocean ind river ■*<'rvicc, 
(which arc really aiils to navigaticm) are 15(H)," i, while for the 
liKhthi.ise and const service for the nine months .u total is 11,046,- 
150, or a grand total for the year of $4,67'i,>*99. If the steel ship- 
buildirig plants could get one-fourth of the amount that will go to 
the steamship companies alone, or $.3(H),00(I it would give suel 
boom to shipbuihling in Canaila that l)eforc many years have pa& 
away a first class fleet of Canadian lake vessels would Iw in i*- 
istenco, and Canadian produce would be almost entirely carried in 
Canadian bottoms. 

The encouragement of lake shipping would reduce the cost of 
transportation both east and west. The (iovernment has aided the 
railways by enormous land grants and cash subsidies, yet this 
important link, the common fresh water carrier, that anyone can 
own ond operate, and is the free agent to carry cheaply in con- 
nection with the railroads or in oppo 'tion to them, has to struggle 
along without assistance. United States lake vessels are now 
getting the full advantage of the Canadian canals, light-houses, 
beacons, and improvements to the waterways generally at an ex- 



penditure of hundreds of thouaands of dollsrs annually. The 
United States lake shipping is getting the best of it in our coastwise 
trade and is flourishing at the expense of the Canadian people. 
Has not the time arrived when the Government and the Parliament 
of Canada should endeavour to meet the situation by affording 
such generous assistance to tha steel shipbuilding industry in the 
Dominion, as will enable it to face existing competition, and furnish 
employment at good wages to thousands of skilled Canadian artisans? 
A bounty on steel shipbuilding would aid the struggling plants on 
the great lakes, and might lead to the establishment of new yards 
at Sydney or Halifax, St. John, Quebec, Vancouver or Victoria. 



ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 



Niagara Falls, Ont., 
March 13th, 1907. 



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